Secretary of Health and Human Services Dr. JudyAnn Bigby today announced Dr. Lauren Smith as Interim Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH). Dr. Smith has served as DPH medical director since 2007.
“As Medical Director, Dr. Smith has led the way on efforts to promote public health in our schools and address health disparities in our communities,” said Secretary Bigby. “She starts her role at a critical time, and I know she will exercise her leadership and passion for public health to guide the department forward.”
At DPH, Dr. Smith has spearheaded key Patrick-Murray Administration priorities, including Mass in Motion, a successful program that combats obesity and promotes healthy living across the Commonwealth. She coordinated the department’s response to the H1N1 influenza outbreak and directed efforts to prevent head injuries in student athletes. She has also led the way at DPH on promoting school nutrition and addressing health disparities for women and minorities.
As a pediatric hospitalist and researcher, Dr. Smith’s clinical and academic work has focused on child health disparities and the impact of public policy on child well-being. Prior to joining DPH, she served as the medical director of Inpatient Pediatrics and the Medical-Legal Partnership at Boston Medical Center. She completed her residency and chief residency at Children’s Hospital, Boston and her fellowship in General Pediatrics at Boston Medical Center.
She holds an MD from the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine and an MPH from the University of California, Berkeley School of Public Health. She completed her undergraduate studies at Harvard College. Dr. Smith succeeds Commissioner John Auerbach.